Shoppers who for months have been unable to redeem points to collect Woolworths’ promotional free containers have received a new dumping of salt in their wounds.
The supermarket, despite widespread complaints over major shortages of the containers, has this week distributed emails encouraging customers to use their points before it’s too late.
Shoppers who racked up adequate points to redeem containers claimed online they have been turned away several times due to their local stores having run out of stock.
The supermarket has however continued to encourage shoppers to keep checking their local retailers, claiming that stock was still being delivered as the promotion wasn’t due to end until February 16.
Customers have made no secret of their contradicting experiences, some going as far to accuse the supermarket of running a “scam” by purposely deceiving them.
When the email was received by shoppers on Thursday, it was no surprise there were a number of people with some choice words for the retailer.
Part of the generic email said, “heads up, last day to redeem your containers in-store”.
“Hurry! Last days to redeem,” was pasted across an image of the stacked containers which made up the body of the email.
“This is the biggest scam Woolworths have ever run. Been trying to find containers for months only to be told they have none and won't be getting more. Yet Woolworths still kept advertising it! Such a disgrace that a billion dollar company can scam people, especially during Covid,” an upset shopper wrote to Facebook.
Another shared a screenshot of the email, writing: “I've been trying! There's no stores with any!”
“This was a great scheme. Far better than plastic gimmicky toys that end up in landfill. However the Bundaberg stores have had no stock for a while now. If stock comes in it’s depleted almost immediately,” a third person wrote, also posting a photo of the email.
A fourth person sarcastically said “well done” and “thanks for the email” in another fiery post.
“I have been trying to redeem them for the last four weeks but any time I have been in store, they have run out! When I ask when they are getting more, they have replied with ‘Don’t know but this was only while stocks last’,” the post read.
Woolworths told Yahoo News Australia on Sunday that delivery of the containers to some stores had been delayed due to shipping issues.
“Since launching last year, we’ve had an incredible response from Woolworths customers who have collected our free glass containers. The aim of the glass containers is to support those who are looking to make every meal count, by providing storage solutions to reduce food waste, but also help customers' shops go further,” a spokesperson said.
“Due to shipping delays caused by Covid, port restrictions, and high customer demand, some stores are temporarily out of glass containers. Rest assured, we have more shipments of additional glass containers on the way that will be distributed to stores across Australia in the coming days and weeks.
“As with many of our collectables, this is a while-stocks-last promotion. Customers can still redeem containers as more stock is distributed in the weeks ahead.”
In response to the complaints online, Woolworths suggested shoppers check for stock online at their nearest stores by chatting to ‘Olive’, the website’s virtual assistant.
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